2016 was a very, very bad year no matter how you slice it. In tough times, comedy is often a form of escape that people turn to when they need comforting. With that in mind, we asked our contributors to pick the one piece of comedy in any form that they turn to when they really need cheering up. We’ll be sharing their choices throughout the week in a package we’re calling “The Best Medicine.”
Jenny Slate is a goddamn delight. I’m going to be using that word a lot here, so buckle up. Between Niece Denise, Pretty Liz, Mona Lisa Saperstein, Tammy Larsen, that dog in The Secret Life of Pets – I could keep going but you get it – there is no shortage of delightful comedy she’s put out into the world. But she’s never funnier or more delightful than when she’s just being herself. Which is why, in the four years since it originally aired, I’ve listened to her episode of You Made It Weird so many times I’ve lost count. It’s hilarious, honest, and wonderful, the opposite of everything this year has been.
One of the common complaints about YMIW is that it’s too long. But at two and a half hours, my only complaint is that this episode isn’t long enough. Your opinion about YMIW host Pete Holmes probably lives or dies by how you feel about his laugh. But whether you can’t stand it or can’t get enough of it there is no denying, we are all Pete Holmes’ laugh as he delights (last one, I swear) in listening to Jenny Slate sing House of the Rising Sun as her parents or tell the story of the ghost that haunted her house growing up. There’s also this segment from The Pete Holmes Show that’s sort of the unofficial follow up to their podcast conversation that’s so delightful (sorry! but you try coming up with a better way to describe Jenny Slate!) you might even forget about the world for a few minutes while you watch it. I know I’m not alone in how much I love this episode of YMIW or how frequently I listen to it. So to the rest of you out there I say, “No, but like, is it a horse?”